googlef87758e9b6df9bec.html A Sure Word: An Open Door

Saturday, October 18, 2008

An Open Door

Οἶδά σου τὰ ἔργα, ἰδοὺ δέδωκα ἐνώπιόν σου θύραν ἠνεῳγμένην, ἣν οὐδεὶς δύναται κλεῖσαι αὐτήν,

“I know your deeds. See, I have placed before you an open door that no one can shut.” Revelation 3:8

While rereading Mounce’s, Basics of Biblical Greek, I came across this interesting example of the Greek aspect of the perfect verb.

In Greek, the perfect aspect represents an event that occurred in the past but the effects continue to the present. When translating this to English, the perfect aspect is sometimes identified by the helping verb “have” but this is not always the case. Perhaps the most recognized and forceful example of the perfect aspect is in the repeated use by Jesus of the phrase, “It is written” (γέγραπται). God said it once and it continues to be the truth forever.

In the verse from Revelation, we see 2 examples of perfect verbs. The first is δέδωκα, “I have put.” The Lord has put this door before us and it remains there. It has not, and indeed never will be, removed. The second perfect verb is ἠνεῳγμένην, “having been opened.” Jesus Himself opened the door and it continues to stand open. To reinforce this, the passage goes on to say, “that no one can shut.” More literally, the Greek says, “one which no one is able to shut it.”

He has given us an invitation represented by an open door. He Himself has given us this invitation and it stands open, even now, waiting for us to enter in. No one (including us) is able to shut the door. We see again still another example of God’s unilateral, unconditional, and unending love for us.

What an awesome promise He has made.

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